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Bugging a med school that I think made a mistake

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by panacea, Mar 11, 2001.

  1. panacea

    panacea Junior Member

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    Hi!

    I applied to med school this year.

    In mid-February I got a rejection letter. It said I didn't meet a couple of the criteria outlined in the application booklet so I'm not going to get an interview. I looked over the application forms again and am very sure I meet the criteria they wrote I didn't meet.

    I wrote an e-mail to the person who signed the rejection letter the evening I got it. A week later I hadn't heard anything so I called the school. Now this school doesn't have people answering the phone so I left a message on the answering machine stating the same things as I wrote in the e-mail. A week later I still hadn't heard anything and left another message --again kindly asking them to look at my application because I think they made a mistake.

    This week it will be a month since I got that letter. The school hasn't in any way acknowledged I tried to contact them.

    I really would like to get into that school but don't want to seem rude or desperate leaving half dozen messages.

    Does someone have some advice for me?
    Am I bugging them enough?
    Would it make sense to take it up a level-- write the dean?

    Thanks!

    [This message has been edited by panacea (edited 03-11-2001).]
     
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  3. Cobragirl

    Cobragirl Hoohaa helper ;)

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    Panacea,
    I know this is a delicate situation for you but it's hard for any of us to give you advice if we don't know WHAT that "criteria" is. If indeed, you met all the "criteria", you must also keep in mind that sometimes...they just reject people. I know this is NOT what you want to hear, but it may be what happened in your case. Sending you the blanket rejection letter saying you have missing "criteria" might have just been their way of saying "thanks, but no thanks". In addition, the fact that they are NOT returning your calls may be another hint. In their minds, the decision has been made...you've been rejected, period, end of discussion. Now, I'm not saying you shouldn't continue to try to contact the school (although I doubt the outcome will change for this go-round). You SHOULD try to contact them, if not for the obvious reason of improving NEXT year's application (assuming you don't get in elsewhere). Personally, I think it's rather rude that no one has even had the decency to call back and tell you something, as bad news is sometimes better than no news at all. If they would at least call you, then you would get your answer (bad or good) and be able to move on.

    PS- I don't know if I would keep calling ...you're probably just annoying some secretary at this point...but a letter to the Dean might be in order.
     
  4. panacea

    panacea Junior Member

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    Hi!

    I know that they 'sometimes just reject people.' I get the feeling that is what happened here. [​IMG]

    The criteria they say I didn't meet are:
    (a) "... have a WGPA of at least 3.3 in their undergraduate studies," and (b) "be in the final year of a master's or doctoral program..."

    My undergraduate WGPA is 3.6 and I am currently in my final year of grad school. I meet both the criteria they say I don't.

    Most disappointing about this situation is I can't show them what I think is one of my strengths --research. They state that as a graduate applicant 'you can send proof of research productivity such as articles, abstracts, letter of reference' --but only
    when 'invited to do so by the Graduate Review Subcommittee.' I wasn't invited to send anything --just got the rejection letter.

    I have two conference abstracts on the hemodynamics of coronary artery bypass graft (CABG) side-to-side anastomoses, one of which was at a past Canadian Cardiovascular Society Annual Meeting. A journal paper on the work is in preparation. The school I'm applying to recently established a chair of medical devices at their heart institute. I thought I could fit in there with my background in biomedical engineering.

    I have to think about it a bit more, but in the mean time, will start formulating a letter to the dean.

    Thanks to all those that responded. [​IMG]
     
  5. mpp

    mpp SDN Moderator
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    I would contact the school and explicitly ask why you weren't accepted. Many admissions offices are happy to explain the reasoning behind their rejection i.e., grades, lack of experience, MCAT scores etc. If they did make a mistake then perhaps they will see their error and reconsider you. If they didn't, you will know what to do to improve your chance when you apply next year.

    Although it is disheartening, being rejected is not the end of the world. There is always next year. The application process is difficult, but so is being a doctor. Think of it as a learning experience. Good luck.

     
  6. Dr JPH

    Dr JPH Banned
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    When (and if) you get in touch with someone at the school, certainly ask them whey you were not accepted. As an above poster commented, they will review your application and maybe even give you some tips to improve you application for the future, should you apply again.

    Make sure you approach this the right way, by asking them politely, and not by demanding "my application is good...what the hell is wrong with you people...". Simply point out that the letter did not fully explain the reason(s) for your rejection.

    You must remember that these schools sometimes consider nearly 6,000 applications. Errors in paperwork are undoubtedly possible.

    Who knows...maybe they mixed your file up with someone else?


    Best of luck...and let us know how it turns out!


    ------------------
    Joshua Paul Hazelton
    [email protected]
    University of the Sciences in Philadelphia (2002)
     
  7. panacea

    panacea Junior Member

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    Hi Everyone:

    I was bold and wrote the dean of medicine (about a week ago). All said I don't think it made a difference. I heard from the school yesterday. Someone from the admissions office called and left a message that said I should call them back. They didn't say anything about a letter to the dean, just a phone call (I made two earlier).

    I called back this morning and was told I don't meet one of the other criteria, not mentioned in the rejection letter. The criteria is 'maintain an A average or more on graduate courses.' I said I have four A-s, two A+s and an A. The admissions officer said that isn't good enough. I then asked how they calculate the graduate average. The person said I have to have a 85%+ average.

    I asked where I was in the applicant pool. They said that it isn't in their policy to disclose that to the reject-applicants. I didn't have much more to say at that point. I then asked if they could give me the rejection in writing (that probably sounded strange) and said thanks and bye.

    ---

    Later today I looked at the applications material again. There is a conversion scale in the application materials. My graduate marks are letter grades. If I take the mid-range values for A- (80-84) A (85-89) and A+ (90-100) I'm above 85%. At the moment I'm not sure what to think about that. I almost want to call back and say "Please explain to me again what you said about the 85%," but I'm not thinking clearly at the moment.


    This is a tough set back but let me put on a brave face and say just a few things:
    I hope that others in this situation do what I did. It is good to know that, in this case, going that extra mile didn't make a difference. Also, I don't imagine too many medical schools make the sort of mistakes that were made on my application. I am still happy I wrote that letter.
     
  8. docuw

    docuw Senior Member

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    I would go in there and talk to them face to face. Schedule a regular old "appointment" and then when you get there, confront them about it. I have to admit, it sounds like they were trying find a way to reject you with delicacy, but it sounds as though they have failed miserably. GET IN THERE AND TALK WITH SOMEONE! Take you transcripts, and get this thing straightened out.

    Of course, if this school is across the country, that isnt very feasible. At least call and speak with someone again about your new findings on the reasoning that they just gave you...

    I know several Doctors who got into medschool by scheduling appointments with the Dean on Admissions and telling them that they wanted to go there. Just that one silly appointment pushed them to the top of the waitlist... the point is talking to people face to face works.

    -DocUW
     
  9. SarahL

    SarahL Senior Member

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    Hi there!

    I agree with docuw. UCSD rejected me pre-interview and I admit that I just sort of laughed when I got the letter. I thought to myself, well, that's just not acceptable! My family lives in San Diego and I really want to go there, so I appealed and now I have an interview coming up.

    I think you should be persistent. They'll be impressed by it, and as long as you're polite and express enthusiasm about attending the school, they won't be bothered by your requests. Just my two cents. :)

    Best of luck whatever you do!

    SarahL
     
  10. Trek

    Trek Grand Uranium Member

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    Wow! Bumped after 365 days! Is this a record? --Trek
     
  11. oldman

    oldman Senior Citizen
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    ehh... the original poster was posting from last year... well i'll add my input anyway. if you send them a letter, send it certified mail so someone will sign it when they receive the letter. that way you'll know some human being received your letter.
     
  12. panacea

    panacea Junior Member

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    </font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Originally posted by oldman:
    <strong>ehh... the original poster was posting from last year... well i'll add my input anyway. if you send them a letter, send it certified mail so someone will sign it when they receive the letter. that way you'll know some human being received your letter.</strong></font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">The letter was registered and the school just choose to ignore it. I know for certain it arrived.

    My conclusion at the end was there isn't much I can do --aside from writing the university ombudsperson to complain about how I was handled. I didn't see the point in that, nor did I have the energy to write another letter to that school, so I let it go.

    All-in-all I don't have any hard feelings about what happened--I didn't meet their admission criteria. This doesn't mean I think what happened is right. It just means I've accepted their judgement and criteria, and worked to pursue my dreams where they use different criteria.

    After licking my wounds, I rewrote the MCAT and applied again. This year things are looking up. I had no interviews last year... this year I have two. :)
     
  13. Darwin

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    man...this is really wierd. Anyone able to figure this one out? The guy posts a year ago...SarahL revives it. Then the guy comes back a year later and posts (He only has 10 posts so it's not like he's on here all the time). This is really trippy.
     
  14. SarahL

    SarahL Senior Member

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    Yeah, I laughed really hard when I figured out that I had revived a year-old thread! I had done a search and found this one...thought it had been posted only a few days before and responded. Then panacea happens to see it and tells us how it all turned out....I think it's time for me to stop obsessing about med school and go enjoy a Saturday in San Francisco, even if it is a cold and foggy one. :)
     
  15. EMDrMoe

    EMDrMoe Senior Member

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    It was great to see how the situation turned out! Very "trippy". :)

    Panacea, keep us posted!
     
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  17. Trek

    Trek Grand Uranium Member

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    </font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Originally posted by Darwin:
    <strong>man...this is really wierd. Anyone able to figure this one out? The guy posts a year ago...SarahL revives it. Then the guy comes back a year later and posts (He only has 10 posts so it's not like he's on here all the time). This is really trippy.</strong></font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Yeah darwin- that's what was messing me up (well, the original bump from a year ago). Maybe we could sell these kinds of experiences as tabs with SDN imprinted <img border="0" title="" alt="[Wink]" src="wink.gif" /> --Trek
     

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